Fab Feathy 2023

We’re thrilled to be able to announce that we have received funding for a ‘transitional’ year, so Fab Feathy will still be around in 2023! This is different than our current partnership with the DIA (which ends at the beginning of Feb 23), and will involve only one facilitator, and some slightly changed priorities.

We will be focusing on closing some of the big projects we have underway (such as an ongoing bicultural and bilingual project) and capturing learnings from our CLD experience that will benefit not only our community, but other CLD’s around the country. We will also be developing options to continue Fab Feathy beyond the transitional year (watch this space!).

We’ll be doing all this while continuing to support our community. On that – our practical support to the community will look a little different next year. With some lofty goals and less facilitators, we’ll be trying to do more with less. That might mean we’re a little less available than in the past, but rest assured, we’re still here and working for Featherston!

Our 2023 priorities:

  1. Closing Projects Well. This workstream is focused on wrapping up incomplete projects.
  2. Capturing Fab Feathy’s Mahi. This workstream is focused on documenting and sharing Fab Feathy’s experience during the partnership so that community-led development (CLD) can continue to flourish in Featherston, and other CLD’s can benefit from Fab Feathy’s experiences.
  3. Designing and Implementing the Future Fab Feathy. This workstream is focused on designing and implementing a model that enables Fab Feathy to continue beyond the transitional year.
  4. Continuing to Add Value to Featherston. This workstream is focused on continuing to deliver the value that is outlined in our value propositions (e.g., creating connections, reinforcing community) and supporting Featherston to achieve the aspirations captured in the 2017 Future Featherston Plan and 2022 Community Survey.
Our community vision from 2017

Fab Feathy Survey Results 2022

In May 2022, fifty-three members of the Featherston community completed a survey run by Fab Feathy. The survey aimed to give Fab Feathy a sense of what was working well in the community, and what should come next.

Analysis of the responses identified twelve key themes. The first set of themes captured what is great about living in Featherston. It seems that the people, the groups, and the community set Featherston apart. To top it off, it is close enough to Wellington to reap the benefits of urban living, but far enough away to stay connected with nature. It is also small enough to maintain a small-town feel.

The second set of themes captures what is working well in Featherston. Community groups, community-led facilities, and community activities are a real strength. This is no surprise given how frequently community members spoke of Featherston’s helpful and supportive community. Local news and events also appear well communicated, and there is a sense that retail and hospitality is a boon for the town.

The final set of themes captures what would make Featherston an even better place to live. Infrastructure, amenities, and services top the list, with people wanting to see improvements in the likes of water, electricity, footpaths, green spaces, and public transport. These desires were closely followed by hopes that both the look and function of the main street could be improved. There were many ideas about how this could be done, but the general sense was that the main strip needs to be tidied up, and that spaces need to be better utilised. In addition to these two major themes, respondents also wanted better collaboration with the council and the other South Wairarapa towns, and to see even more activities run in Featherston.

To close the survey, residents were asked what Fab Feathy should do next. For those that answered this question from the perspective of “should Fab Feathy continue?” the mandate is clear: Fab Feathy’s mahi should continue. Others in the community answered this question from the perspective of “what actions should Fab Feathy pursue?”. These ideas are summarised in Table 5 at the end of the full report.

Though the future of Fab Feathy is not yet decided, the feedback provided by the community provides plenty of direction; both for Fab Feathy’s next ten months, as well as if its mahi continues beyond 2023.

If you would like to find out more about our mahi, feel free to call into the Community Centre to say hello, email us, or keep an eye out for our monthly column in the Featherston Phoenix and our updates on Facebook!

To read the full report on our survey findings, see below: